Letters to L&N, the Louisville, and Nashville Railroad Company, from people who formerly lived north about Baldwin County, Ala.

         Letters are dated from 1904 to 1912.
Silverhill train depot located in what is now Robertsdale on Chigago street, across from Campbell's Hardware. - Click to enlarge.

         This is a soft cover magazine, with extensive water damage, located at the Silverhill Library. The entire magazine contains testimonials (listed alphabetically in the person’s name) and photos of homes and farms. The back cover is a map of the L&N railroad and all of its stops with the names of the stations. The map is dated 1-28-'13. The only advertising in the magazine is on the inside back cover, which reads:

The Louisville & Nashville Railroad

Runs Homeseekers’ Excursions on the first and third Tuesdays in each month at very low rates for the round trip, tickets good to stop off at pleasure, and return within twenty-five days from date of issue.

These tickets are sold from Cincinnati, Ohio; Maysville, Louisville, Owensboro, Ky; Evansville, Ind., and St. Louis, Mo., and at principal locations between Evansville, Ind., and St. Louis, Mo.

For particulars as to lands, farms, fruit and vegetable growing and business opportunities, write to

G. A. Park,

General Immigration and Industrial Agent

Louisville & Nashville Railroad Co.
Louisville, Kentucky

   I came here from Chicago to Silver Hill, where I bought forty acres, of which I have about fifteen under cultivation; the soil is mostly sandy loam, with clay sub-soil. The soil is very productive and with proper cultivation we can raise
all kinds of early vegetables with good success, such as Irish potatoes, radishes, cucumbers, cabbage, onions, cantaloupes, lettuce, etc., which are shipped to Northern markets. Corn and oats are grown here with success. The most of the farmers here plant cotton as a second crop after Irish potatoes, with good results. I believe that Baldwin County will be the center of truck raising as it is already known in the Northern markets for the excellent quality of vegetables raised.

   The climate is good, we cannot wish for anything better. No cold winters and no exceedingly hot summers; on account of the short distance from the Gulf we have a refreshing breeze every day during the summer, which moderates the temperature, so we never feel the heat here as much as up North. The drinking water is pure and of excellent quality. Contagious diseases are not known in Baldwin County. I fully believe that this is the right place for the Northern people who want to secure a home and become independent.

   Erick Brown. Silverhill, Ala., May 29, 1907.

   We came from Decatur County, Kansas, in the fall of 1903. I was troubled with rheumatism there, but since we came here, I have not felt it.

   There are so many things that grow here, we thought it best to
grow stuff for the Northern market and buy our feed this year, but will turn our attention to live stock and raise our own feed after this.
I think that live stock will be a good thing here as we can make any amount of forage, both winter and summer, and get manure to build up our land with.

   We need more people here to help build up and improve this fine country, so it will be like the “Garden of Eden”.

   O. P. Forsman. Silverhill, Ala., September 15, 1908.

   I have been here eleven years and have made a good living. It is getting better every year. We have our place built now and have a nice house. We are now starting in with dairy cows as we have now a creamery, which pays us well.

   I have also done some trucking with Irish potatoes and cucumbers, etc.

   We have a fine climate here and good water. The soil is dark brown, with clay bottom; there is also some sandy soil.

   O. Forland. Silverhill, Ala., October 25, 1909.

   I wish to say a few words about farming in Baldwin County. The farmers here plant Irish potatoes in January and February. After the potatoes are harvested, we plant cotton, rice, or cowpeas, as a second crop. Rice grows to perfection here, five feet high and over.

   Cotton is a sure second crop and a good paying crop; we generally get one bale to the acre, at 10 to 11 cents per pound, which means $50.00 to $60.00 per acre.

   Bermuda onions have proven to be a good paying crop. In fact, everything the farmer plants grows to perfection and gives good results. The soil and climate is admirably adapted to diversified farming. The land is easily cleared, in fact, I would just as soon clear three acres here as one acre in Minnesota. I have lived in that State for twenty-two years.

   Baldwin County is also well suited for stock raising and dairying; we can feed the cattle outside ten months in the year. Sheep are feed outside on the wild grass the year round.

   The climate here is certainly fine. We do not suffer from the heat as they do in the North in summer, because we have the refreshing breeze from the Gulf every day and the nights are always cool. We never hear of sunstroke, or that a person gets overheated here, which frequently occurs in the North.

   Many Northern people are moving to this section and they are all satisfied with this country and are doing well.

   P. M. Johnson. Silverhill, Ala., August 18, 1908.

   Baldwin County is the trucking center in the Gulf region, and its products have become famous for their fine quality, and are shipped to the great cities in the North and East. The farmers here do not entirely depend on truck raising; they can raise sugar cane, cotton and take three and four crops of hay during the summer. The hay crop is mostly cowpeas and velvet beans. I raise cotton on my farm as a second crop after Irish potatoes and one bale up to one and one-half to the acre is not unusual. This country is especially well adapted to stock raising on account of the cattle feeding outside all the all the year around; and in the winter time we can have the pasture planted with oats, which grows all winter and is an excellent food, especially for milk cows. I make two crops of cowpeas for hay. Poultry is also very profitable down here, on account of the mild winters.

  I am a great believer in diversification and feel confident that a man can make his living here with less worry than up North.

   Peter Johnson. Silverhill, Ala., May 31, 1907

   I have resided in Baldwin County about three years and in that time I have improved my health and strength. Always suffered from colds and other illness during the long and weary winters up North, while here we have perpetual summers. Sickness we have very little. The summers are not any hotter than they are up North, as we always have breezes from the Gulf. In mid-summer the nights are cool and a light covering is sometimes necessary.

   The water is pure and there is plenty of it. The soil will produce almost everything and with a building up with barnyard manure it will produce wonderfully. We have several kinds of soil, but one is about as good as another. The farmers in

this section are going largely into trucking this year. We shipped some of the finest radishes up North with strawberries, cantaloupes, peaches, and other fruits and vegetables to follow. The farmers are very enthusiastic and they all think that this county has a
very bright future. What we need down here the most, is some more industrious farmers. I am well satisfied to make this my home, as I think it is a poor man’s Paradise.

   Charles M. Lyrene. Silverhill, Ala., April 14, 1907.

   Allow me to express my opinion about Baldwin County as a farming country. The land taken on an average is good and is suitable for farming purposes. The climate and water are the best I have ever seen.

   There are probably many in the North who are afraid to come down here, believing that the heat is so excessive, they cannot stand it. To these, I wish to state that I have not found one day too warm to work. Such a thing as sunstroke is not known in this section.

   Peter Nelson. Silverhill, Ala., December 4, 1909.

   I came from Chicago six years ago and have found Baldwin County the exact place for me. I was always sick in Chicago, but since I came down here I have enjoyed perfect health, so I found Baldwin County a suitable place for even sick people to regain health.

   The water and climate are two things which ought to also be mentioned. Water is pure and very healthy and the climate is neither too hot nor too cold. Concerning the soil, I think it can be built up so as to produce any crop. Crops grow and yield splendidly, if they are properly cared for, so I have a high opinion of Baldwin County.

   C. J. Ofverberg. Silverhill, Ala., September 29, 1908

   I came here with my family from St. Peter, Minn., and am satisfied. The climate and water are unsurpassed. Everything grows to perfection. I have rice five feet high already. The soil produces all sorts of vegetables and all kinds of fruits, also corn, cotton, both Irish and sweet potatoes, grapes, cucumbers and cantaloupes. Strawberries are doing well. I had one-fourth acre planted last season; from that patch I shipped sixty-five crates. I began to pick in March and kept on picking until June.

   If the plants are set out in September, we can get a full crop the following season.

   Cattle can be fed on the wild grass the year round. Here is an excellent opportunity for a Northern man with some capital to start in the creamery business.

   It is much easier to get a home and become independent here than in the North. The land is level, easy to clear. A man can make his living on much less land than in the North, because while they raise one crop in the North in one season, we can raise three here, and further, in the North the planting must all be done at once and the

same with the harvest, but here we can plant a little at a time and without such a rush and consequently we can take care of everything better with less expense. We have churches, schools, stores, etc., and the community is prosperous.

   C. J. Swenson. Silverhill, Ala., August, 1908.

   I moved to Baldwin County, Ala., from Palestine, Neb., and have found that with proper cultivation and fertilizing, this soil will produce large crops of everything that is planted.

   What we need most is a large number of farmers with small farms, and all of them to keep cattle.

   All one needs to be successful is to have enough capital to make a good start.

   P. Thorson. Silverhill, Ala., November 11, 1908.